Choosing exterior door systems for your home is exciting. Your doors can dramatically change the look and feel of your indoor and outdoor living spaces. With so many options on the market, how do you choose what’s best for you? Here’s a quick breakdown of the types of doors you’ll come across while shopping to help you determine the best fit for your house.

Panel Doors & Windowed Doors

BEST FOR: Front doors or other exterior entryways.

Panel doors and windowed doors are popular options for front doors. Available in a wide variety of designs, they’re typically made of:

  • Wood

  • Fiberglass

  • Steel

What material is the best?

Well, it depends on your personal preferences and budget. 



Wooden doors are gorgeous, but they require a lot of attention and are susceptible to warping, rotting, and other environmental damage, particularly in harsh climates. If the maintenance demands don’t deter you, expect to spend anywhere from $500-$4,000 for your wood door.

  • Cost: High

  • Maintenance: High

  • Durability: Low


The happy medium of door materials. Fiberglass is resistant to weather damage and hard to damage. They’ll require touch ups here and there, but for the most part, you can install it and leave it alone for a few years. They’re not the most affordable option, but they don’t have to break the bank.

  • Cost: Moderate

  • Maintenance: Low

  • Durability: High


While it sounds like steel would be the sturdiest material, it’s actually quite easy to damage. It’s not susceptible to warping or cracking like wood, but it’s very easy to dent and scratch. Steel doors are prone to rust if scratches and other surface damage isn’t repaired properly. They’re a low-maintenance, affordable option best used for exterior doors in areas without a lot of foot traffic.

  • Cost: Low

  • Maintenance: Low

  • Durability: Low


Storm Doors

BEST FOR: Extra protection for panel or windowed doors.

Storm doors are an additional layer of defense for your exterior doors. Available in glass, screen, and sliding hybrid styles, storm doors provide:

  • Increased defense against harsh weather

  • An additional layer of insulation

  • The ability to open the main door to let in sunny weather without also inviting the rest of the outdoors inside.


French Doors

BEST FOR: Front entryways or patio entryways. They can also be used to divide rooms in your home, or even as closet doors.

Classic and timeless, French doors are available in a variety of design options. These hinged double doors make a statement in your home, but they require quite a bit of space since they swing open from the sides.

However, this also creates wide, breezy entryways when both doors are open. French doors are beautiful, but they can be tricky to properly install and weatherseal without the right tools. Our French door parts solve those problems so you have a door system that’s as secure as it is beautiful.



BEST FOR: Well, the patio entrance. Or any entrance to your home where privacy and security aren’t as high priority (like from a balcony or porch), since they’re typically made of glass.


Hinged patio doors differ from French doors in that one panel is typically fixed, and the moveable door can open from the center panel or from the side. If you’re looking for alower maintenance door system without sacrificing style, hinged patio doors might be a good option for you.


Sliding patio doors open by sliding movable glass panels across a track. They take up little to no space when opening since the panels can overlap one another. Because of this, they make a great alternative to French doors for those of you who love natural light and want a seamless transition between your indoor and outdoor living areas without sacrificing the space required by french doors.


While we don’t sell door panels, we’re here to answer any questions you may have about the components which improve the overall function of most of the panels mentioned above!

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NOTE: BetterDoor does not carry door components for storm or sliding doors.